February 28, 2013

Decked With Holly by Marni Bates

Title: Decked With Holly
Author: Marni Bates
Pages: 272
Publisher: K-Teen

From goodreads.com:  Taking a Christmas cruise with her two cousins from hell isn't Holly's idea of a good time. And when seasickness forces her into an open suite, she's pepper-sprayed by a gorgeous guy called Nick. But when Holly makes her exit, she's greeted by a horde of screaming teenage fans. Because Nick happens to be Dominic Wyatt, drummer for one of the hottest bands in America. Suddenly rumours are swirling and Holly's face is plastered all over the Internet. The band can't risk a scandal destroying their family-friendly image, so Dominic convinces Holly to be his fake girlfriend - just for two weeks. How bad could it be to be "fauxmantically" involved with a cute rock star? She's about to find out...

I picked this one up right before Christmas because it sounded Christmassy, it looked Christmassy, and, as an added bonus, it qualified for the Sophomore Reading Challenge.  It turns out it wasn't actually that Christmassy, but that's alright.  It had a ton of other things for me to love about it including:

  • Holly and Nick's begrudging interactions
  • how their relationship went from necessary (from a PR standpoint) to something neither of them wanted to give up
  • Nick himself: drummer for the famous band ReadySet - and crankpot extraordinaire
  • the other ReadySet guys.  Though we only got glimpses of them, they were awesome.  I would have loved to have spent more time with them.

The one thing I was kind of on the fence about was the way Holly sometimes treated their agreement.  I know in my head that any girl would have seen the 'I can use this to make myself popular' angle, but I wanted Holly to be better than that.  Eventually she was though, and that's why I don't even really count it as a detriment.

Based on how much I loved this I'll definitely be checking out Bates's first book, Awkward.  I enjoyed her writing style and characters, and I look forward to seeing more from her in the future.

February 27, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (39)

Author: Aprilynne Pike
Pub Date: 4.30.13
From goodreads.com: Moving to a new high school sucks. Especially a rich-kid private school. With uniforms. But nothing is worse than finding out the first girl you meet is dead. And a klepto. 
No one can see or hear Kimberlee except Jeff, so--in hopes of bringing an end to the snarkiest haunting in history--he agrees to help her complete her "unfinished business." But when the enmity between Kimberlee and Jeff's new crush, Sera, manages to continue posthumously, Jeff wonders if he's made the right choice.

This is a retelling of the Scarlet Pimpernel and I love retellings, so hopefully this one will be great!

February 26, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday (39)

This week's topic is
Top Ten Authors on my Auto-Buy List

I feel like this list just keeps growing every time I pick up a new book.  I'm going to not include the ones that I feel are really obvious (JK Rowling, Meg Cabot, Megan McCafferty, John Green) and it's still going to be too long.  Here we go...

1. Holly Black - I list her Curseworkers books in my my favorite books of all time.  I think Cassel is one of the best narrators I've ever read.  Based on this series alone she gets on this list.  Plus, she's all around awesome and her Modern Faerie Tales series will probably be the only faerie books on my TBR list ever.

2. Lauren Oliver - I really enjoyed Before I Fall, but it was Delirium that hooked me and Pandemonium that sealed the deal.  I've heard great things about her middle grade books also.  

3. Kody Keplinger - I've only read two of her books, but I think she always has something interesting to say and her books always make me think, which I really like.

4. Gayle Forman - So much love.  Gayle always tells these great stories and every time I think about them I have to force myself not to pick up Where She Went again.

5. Veronica Roth - Divergent was a 'big book' that I avoided forever, but now that I've read it, I understand why it is one of those big books, because it's so so amazing.  I can't wait for the third one to come out and I'll read anything else she decides to write.

6. Stephanie Perkins - My life is a constant state of wanting to reread Anna and Lola.  

7. Morgan Matson - I feel like there's so much crap contemporary out there that when I find contemporary writers that I enjoy, I really stick with them.  Morgan Matson is one of those writers.  She's just so good.  I read Amy and Roger and couldn't wait to see what was next.  Second Chance Summer did not disappoint at all and I'm anxiously awaiting her next book.

8. Sarah J. Maas - I LOVED Throne of Glass and the four novellas that came before it and she's super nice in person and I just love her okay?

9. Brodi Ashton - I've only read Everneath, but that's enough.  I've heard great things about Everbound as well.

10. Melina Marchetta - So far I've read Saving Francesca and The Piper's Son and they're by no means happy books, but something about them just makes me want to take my time with them and live in them for a while.  I can't wait to read more from her.

Huh, I managed to make enough cuts so the list didn't go over 10.  Go me!  I can't wait to see which authors are on your auto-buy list.

February 13, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (38)

Title: Strangelets
Author: Michelle Gagnon
Pub Date: 4.9.13
From goodreads.com: 
17-year-old Sophie lies on her deathbed in California, awaiting the inevitable loss of her battle with cancer…
17-year-old Declan stares down two armed thugs in a back alley in Galway, Ireland…
17-year-old Anat attempts to traverse a booby-trapped tunnel between Israel and Egypt…
All three strangers should have died at the exact same moment, thousands of miles apart. Instead, they awaken together in an abandoned hospital—only to discover that they’re not alone. Three other teens from different places on the globe are trapped with them. Somebody or something seems to be pulling the strings. With their individual clocks ticking, they must band together if they’re to have any hope of surviving.  
Soon they discover that they've been trapped in a future that isn't of their making: a deadly, desolate world at once entirely familiar and utterly strange. Each teen harbors a secret, but only one holds the key that could get them home. As the truth comes to light through the eyes of Sophie, Declan, and Anat, the reader is taken on a dark and unforgettable journey into the hearts of teens who must decide what to do with a second chance at life.

February 12, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday (38)

This week's topic is
Top Ten Favorite Romances

Now, I'm kind of short on time this week so for the majority of this list I'm going to point you over here.  It's my top ten fictional couples list, and it still holds true.  It's pretty much everyone that I would have put on this list.  Going back and looking over that list, I see that I like my romances to be full of turmoil.  I want nothing to come easy for the couples that I love together.  It tends to make the payoff even sweeter...or it just makes me a crazy person.  Whatever.

I do want to add one couple to that list and that is Tiger Lily & Peter Pan from Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson.  They fit right into that 'nothing comes easy' category.  Their buildup was just so beautiful and their story is heartbreaking.

Happy Valentine's Day everyone!

February 6, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (37)

Author: Lauren Roedy Vaughn
Pub Date: 3.21.13
From goodreads.com: With frizzy orange hair, a plus-sized body, sarcastic demeanor, and "unique learning profile," Danielle Levine doesn't fit in even at her alternative high school. While navigating her doomed social life, she writes scathing, self-aware, and sometimes downright raunchy essays for English class. As a result of her unfiltered writing style, she is forced to see the school psychologist and enroll in a "social skills" class. But when she meets Daniel, another social misfit who is obsessed with the cult classic film The Big Lebowski, Danielle's resolve to keep everyone at arm's length starts to crumble.

February 5, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday (37)

This week's topic is
Top Ten Bookish Memories

1.  BEA12 - Last year was the first year I have ever gone to anything like this.  It was unreal to be surrounded by so many people who love books as much as I do for three whole days.  I also really loved getting to meet so many of my favorite authors (Holly Black!  Lauren Oliver!  Diana Peterfreund!) and getting so many awesome books.  I can't wait to go again this year.

2. Working the Deathly Hallows midnight release party - My store went all out for the HP 7 release.  We hung candles on fishing line and hung them from the ceiling, had house banners (which you can see in the picture), a lot of the staff got dressed up, there were games, I manned the face painting.  It was just one of those nights that didn't really feel like work, it was awesome.

3. Meeting Holly Black at BEA - This gets its own mention because I still can't even believe it happened.  She tweeted about a secret signing the day before, we stalked where it was going to be, ran from meeting Libba Bray and found Holly and Ellen Kushner sitting at a small table with very few people around them.  There were no books left (they were signing Welcome to Bordertown), but what did I care?  I just wanted to tell Holly how much I love the Curseworkers series and I got to do that and take this very awesome picture with her.

4. TBC at my library - TBC stands for Teen Book Club.  I always hung out at my town library when I was younger and for part of that time at least we had TBC.  We read books picked by our librarian and occasionally watched the movies that went with them (I specifically remember doing this with The Outsiders).  I love that even now they still have TBC and sometimes I still go when they have author visits (it's not that weird because my sister worked there up until very recently).  It's how I met the very amazing Lynn Weingarten (Wherever Nina Lies, The Secret Sisterhood of Heartbreakers).
5. Tweeting with authors - This is such a cool thing that could never have happened when I was younger.  You really have a direct line to the people that have written your favorite books and you get to see their thoughts about (sometimes) meaningless things.  I've tweeted back and forth with Megan McCafferty for gods sake.  About Jersey Shore no less.

6. The Hudson Valley YA Society - What a cool thing they do there.  At least once a month at Oblong Books they have awesome YA authors come and talk about anything and do a signing.  I've seen Cassandra Clare, Gayle Forman, Libba Bray, Andrea Cremer.  The list goes on and on.  And what makes it even more fun is that Suzanna and Jen clearly love YA books and always host a great event.

I'm only going with six this week because my sickness-addled brain can't dredge up any more.  I'm going to go read a little bit/fall asleep with my book in hand (like I did yesterday).  Hooray for sick days!  Don't forget to check out my very first GIVEAWAY!

February 4, 2013

In My Mailbox (33) & GIVEAWAY!

Hosted by The Story Siren

I went to another Hudson Valley YA Society (@HVYASociety on twitter) event this weekend at Oblong Books!  This time they hosted Amy McNamara, Elizabeth LaBan, and Gayle Forman.

It was, as usual, a great event and I came home with way too many books.

(I had this one already, so it doesn't really belong here, but I did get it signed.)

I brought home some new ARCs too.  I won the raffle, which got me the first two and grabbed the third out of a basket they put out at the end of the event.

Now for the super exciting part.  I had an ARC of Just One Day as well as a hardcover, so I figured I'd take it with me and get it signed for one of my lovely followers!  Must be ages 13+ and a U.S. resident to win.  Winner will be notified by email.

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